One of our employees will be leaving us this week.
Erika Vela, our Social Media Manager and Special Assignments Editor has accepted another position with the Fredericksburg Standard Radio Post.
This will be her last newspaper with us, but by no means her last newspaper.
Erika came to us a little over two years ago. In her words, she had always wanted to be a journalist. And that she certainly became. She took photos, wrote feature stories and then started covering City of Poteet and Poteet ISD meetings plus school sports and functions.
But that wasn’t all she did. She was here only a few days and volunteered to donate a salad to the Pleasanton Friends of the Library fundraiser. But then, who could refuse the Friend’s Alma Jones request?
She also was our resident craftsy person. She and her nieces, Delanie and Adelie, were quick to join in the decorating of our office’s front porch, too, for holidays.
I’m going to borrow a phrase from a seasoned newspaperman, Donnis Baggett of the Texas Press Association – she inspires me. Donnis uttered those words to me when my daughter worked with him. He prefaced it by stating that he was unsure of newspapers’ future with some of the millennials that he had worked with and been around.
Erika is an old soul even though she is only 30 years old. Maybe that’s why she fits in our little newspaper family so well. She hasn’t had an easy life – losing her baby sister and her mom – but she doesn’t let those experiences define her.
We’ve seen such growth in the short time she was here and, I hope, that we all had a part in helping her hone her skills.
The way I see it, our loss is Fredericksburg’s gain. You GROW, girl! And keep on inspiring others. We’ll miss you.
SUE BROWN is the editor of the Pleasanton Express. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or write at P.O. Drawer 880, Pleasanton, TX 78064.